ABC finally canceled Marvel’s Agent Carter last week. The short-run winter series, which spelled the fall and spring halves of Agents of SHIELD these past two years, had been a ratings disappointment. Once star Hayley Atwell was cast by the network in a potential regular-season legal drama, now picked up to series, writing met wall.
You can’t entirely blame ABC, who clearly wants to be in business with Atwell.
SHIELD itself hasn't exactly been a ratings bonanza — due in part to ongoing identity crises, tensions between Marvel’s film and television enterprises that leave the big-screen blockbusters bereft of nearly any reference to (and, thus, what should be no-brainer promotion of) the show, and the general demands that “peak TV” has put on viewers’ time. I’ve enjoyed both SHIELD and Carter, however, even as what they do well makes my frustration over what they could be doing better all the greater.
Stella Saner would have been 100 years old today, had she not passed early in the morning of January 21st with her daughter, my mother, at her side.
Here’s a lightly edited version of what I wrote to read at her memorial service.
Top: Stella Saner in 1946 with her husband, Leon, and two
daughters, Ronda and Sherie. Bottom: Stella with Sherie in 2015.
I have a distinct memory of being in my grandparents’ bedroom in the pink house in Wildwood — not sure I’m even in the double digits at this point — as Grandmom tells me that while the face in her mirror keeps getting older she doesn’t feel any older inside.
Technical problems here and other projects demanding my attention mean that the blog will continue to be very light on new content for a while, so the Campbell's Cream of Mushroom Soup can is long overdue for display. More to come sooner rather than later, hopefully, including the restoration of a few recent posts that got taken down. Please check in every now and then.
I’m plodding through some kind of marshland canal in a Colonial Era village at dusk. Muddy and wet, I stop in a cabin to warm up, strip my clothes off, and grab some new ones that had been left there to dry by the fire. Then, after stealing into the night once more, I enter another house by the back door with hopes of making it out the front unseen — only to discover a youthful fortysomething David Bowie, in appropriate period dress and with his sandy blond hair rakishly tousled, cooking over a stove.
“Are you leaving us, then?” he asks.
“Yes,” I tell him, or maybe I just nod, and I exit. I pause with second thoughts, however, then head in again. Extending my hand, I say, “I’ve been a tremendous admirer since I was a kid. I just wanted to thank you.” He is gracious. I wake up.
Kindred Posts: Head Space • David Bowie 1947-2016
• Dream a Little Dream of Meep; or, The Subconscious and the Frog